This week we worked on links and how important it is to have links especially to hopefully build back links to our website from others websites. I have been wanting to add many links to my website, but hadn’t thought about others posting links to my website. This will definitely be something I will be working on in the near future.
We also reviewed our Google Analytics reports. I found that my Analytics and Adword accounts were not linked. I ended up calling Google at 1-866-246-6453 and they were very helpful. They were not able to help me delete the extra shell account with our good email on it. This is what is causing the problems I am having. I think I will cancel my adwords account when the class is over and then start it back up in that shell account that just needs to be completed. I just don’t need two running accounts doing the same thing.
We also learned about “Woorank”. I found it interesting to see that ranking and see the different problems it stated that I had. As to some of those problems, I don’t really think they are problems. An example was having underscores in some of my links. It suggested that I use hyphens, but my husband is a coder and says that it is always better to underscores. I need to look into this more.
Things I think I understand and can change are:
- meta tag description
- add a facebook account
- Text size
- Add custom 404 error
- Robots.txt (need to figure out what this is, but it says it is easy to solve.
My Woorank score was a 36.7. I don’t know if this is good, average, or bad. I just find there is more and more to learn and figure out each week.
I am not really good with social media and was a little concerned about understanding this topic, but I am excited about what I have learned this week. We learned about different types of social media and I realize that without the social media a website is very unlikely to succeed.
I worked on making my power point into a video and posted it on You Tube and then was able to embed the code into my website. It has no audio so really needs to be upgraded to a video with sound. Hopefully, I can get this done before the end of the year.
I found many videos on You Tube that will work for my website. I need to see if I can get permission to post some of those videos on my website as they are far more professional than I can make at least at this time. I can make links to them, but that will take them away from my website, but I may need to start at least with that. I think there is a way to make a link so that it just opens another window and my website would still be up and easy to come back to.
Always more to learn. I am making progress, but progress seems so slow and always more to do. I also need to start a Facebook account for the website so that people can share their ideas. I also need to check out blogs that currently exist for elementary school age education and home schoolers. I can try to follow what they are saying and hopefully get many of them to participate on the Facebook account.
We worked more on optimizing our websites this week. We learned about improving our landing pages and ways to improve our websites to improve search engine optimization.
My struggle is to improve the home page. I moved many things off the home page and moved them to the “About Us” page. I was finally able to add a link to YouTube so people could view my power point on how to use the website. I also add some quick links so people could quickly view a sample workbook, coloring page, and activity page.
I also made changes in some of the text by changing the wording and changing the color and size of some of the text. It had been awhile since I had actually worked with html and I am getting more comfortable with it. I am still struggling with the CSS and finally just used inline styling to make some of the changes. Since this will be the only page with those effects, this should be just fine and easier to make the changes if needed in the future.
This week we learned more about tracking our ad campaigns and using Google Analytics for tracking information on our websites. I am learning to get around better and becoming more familiar with Adwords and Google Analytics.
On Adwords, I can add and delete keywords, and ad campaigns. I can read the data that it gives me. I just don’t understand what all the data it gives me means. I don’t know if it is good or bad other than I do understand that a good quality score is 6/10 or better. I am beginning to understand that a good quality score is how high an ad is ranked and the amount of money you bid. I still feel in the dark though how this really helps my website if at all. According to Google Analytics, it doesn’t seem to really be helping, but maybe I am reading the reports incorrectly.
I feel like it will take months to learn how this all works together and wonder if it is worth the money or is this just a gimmick by Google to take lots of people’s money and give them hope that it will help more people get to their website?
This week we learned more about adwords and then began learning about Google Analytics. We had to get a tracking code and place it into our website. I believe I need to place it on all pages of my website which will take me a long time if I have to manually place it into each page since I have over 300 pages. I hope I can use the find and replace in the whole project using the web editor. That will make it much easier. Hopefully, I have time tomorrow to work on it. I don’t understand much about the Google Analytics, but hope I figure it out better through the next few weeks.
This week were learning more about Google Ads and learning to write our own creative ad. I found it fun to participate in the discussion board and see the adds that others thought up and see ideas others had to help the first ads we put up. I find that two or more heads are often better than one head and in this exercise I think it really helped to work together.
We are also supposed to be working on our websites. This is very time consuming and I spent hours fixing things up on my website and still have many improvements to make. I created a Power Point that I need to put up on my home page to guide people on how to use the website. I have many more ideas, but each takes lots of time to implement although I am finding faster ways to edit the website which makes it easier and faster to make changes.
I also began working on a second website, but need to study CSS quite a bit more to get the layout the way I want it.
This week we learned about business structures, licenses and taxes. It was easy for me to choose the LLC structure since we already have one in place. Since we are not selling anything at this time, we don’t need a license for sales tax collection and reporting. In the future, if I need one, I just go down to the local county office and get the paper work needed and turn it in. Local taxes are to be reported quarterly unless your sales are small enough you can get an exemption to turn it in annually.
Sight designing was the first part of the week. We studied this every week of my web design class. There is a lot to think about in designing a website. One the most important things to me is the navigation of the website. It is challenging to figure out just how you want your pages and how to link them so that it is easy to build the site as well and most importantly so the customers can find their way around your site.
One thing I learned is that I can create a canvas page in In Design that is 783 x 398 pixels to design my pages. This is similar to the largest screen that it might be viewed on by customers. While looking into this, I also found that I can design in In Design and there is a way to export to Dream Weaver. Something I need to look into.
We also learned about credit card usage on websites. We looked into different options especially Pay Pal. I looked into Amazon.com and found that I liked this option more. It looks like their services have no other fees except a percentage of the sale item plus a .30 cent charge for each transaction. Amazon is newer at this service than Pay Pal, but I think I would prefer to work with them because I feel like most people have Amazon accounts and use Amazon if they are online purchasers whereas Pay Pal is just an account you have to create to exchange money.
We learned about site builders and hosting companies. I learned that most hosting companies are also site builders, and most site builders also provide hosting. There is a lot to look at when searching for either one of these services. I liked Wix.com. It looked the easiest to me, but most people in my class chose to use Weebly.com.
I will be using my phonics program for this class as it is already up and running, but we need to learn how to increase the traffic coming into the program and if there are any other affiliates like Amazon.com that I can put up on the site to help bring in some income from the site.
I also looked at Expressions (web building tool) by Microsoft. I watched a few tutorials and it looks fairly easy to use. They offer a free download of Dreamspark another version of Expression to students. I tried downloading it and it did not work.
I looked at netbeans as a text editor, and see a few advantages to using it rather than word pad. Netbeans has numbers for the lines and makes sure you have ending tags, but other than that it seems to be about the same.
I have started watching a few Dreamweaver training videos through Lynda.com. Since we already have Dreamweaver, I think this is what I need to learn. I like the design view, but also have the capability to work with the coding or at least see the coding that is being created. I hope to create the next website using Dreamweaver.